Carla Zampatti Australia Resort 2025 Collection


One of the season’s most awaited shows took place on the first night of Australian Fashion Week, with the return of the beloved Carla Zampatti label to the runway, after the untimely passing of its founding designer. An excitable crowd showed up wearing the brand’s opulent evening gowns to cheer on Karlie Unger, the new creative director. (A second show, open to the public, was held immediately after. It was sold out.)

As the show was about to begin, the word DINASTIA appeared on a screen behind the runway, then a short movie aired showing a model playing with an antique-looking Roman coin emblazoned with Carla Zampatti emblems. “The coins kind of speak to the challenges within females—the different facets of our personality,” said Unger backstage after the show. “There was the empress, which signifies strength; a symbol for harvest references our seasonal offer; the honeybee is about our trade. It’s us but in a different way.”

The first look, a sparkly feathered romper, felt like a clean slate from which to begin writing the new story; the first few looks, in fact, showcased elegant coats worn over nothing more than black briefs and semi-sheer black hose. Further emphasizing the point of a new beginning was the color palette of the collection, which began with all-black looks, followed by a sort of wheat-shade, then gold, then white, and finally bold punches of color in baby blue, silver, and hunter green. Many of the pieces in the collection were shown multiple times in different colorways, capturing a new mood each time.

Designers often like to speak about how their clothes are for all women, but on the Carla Zampatti runway this was not just lip service. First, because the models, who were diverse not only in age but in body type, felt like a truthful reflection of Zampatti’s real-life customers; and second, because of the broad styles on offer. A crisp jacket with strong, square shoulders and off-center buttons worn with matching straight leg trousers was poised for a black-tie gala in black, and ready for a corporate job in a natural linen shade. A white billowing caftan-esque blouse worn with black high-waisted trousers had the same glamorous impact as a fitted semi-sheer gown in a jewel shade of green with expertly placed panels on the bodice for modesty.

Some of the sheer turtleneck and pencil skirt combos did not feel entirely new, but they were overshadowed by more impactful moments, especially in the tailoring. A mid-length swing coat with voluminous sleeves had a curved asymmetrical lapel with a multi-pleat detail at the bust secured with three coin buttons was made from a rich jacquard with a swirl pattern like the sands of time, while a white wool tunic worn with matching trousers featured open sleeves and a belt at the waist.

“The thing about Mum is that she did this for 55 years—she really didn’t stay still,” said Alex Schuman, Zampatti’s son and the brand’s CEO. “She was a very contemporary woman and she was always happy to reinvent. The brand has such a rich history that we can draw from, it’s really ours to re-energize and take it to the next generation of empowered women.”

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Tags: Australia Resort 2025, Carla Zampatti, runway, runway_review

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